By Matthew Ogune, Abuja
The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) said it has arrested a primary school teacher, Mrs. Roseline Uche Egbuha, three staff of Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB) and a lawyer for allegedly laundering N550 million.
This was contained in a statement yesterday in Abuja by the agency Spokesperson, Rasheedat Okoduwa.
According to Okoduwa, Mrs. Egbuha, a teacher with Ozala Primary School, Abagana, Anambra State, was earlier arrested in October, 2019 by ICPC and granted administrative bail, after an investigation into her financial transactions consequent upon the receipt of a petition, had shown her alleged involvement in money laundering.
Also in ICPC custody are a Compliance Officer of GTB, Beckley Ojo, an Operations Manager, Chisomaga Daly-Okoro, a staff of the legal department of the bank, Sarah Ugamah and an external lawyer to GTB, Nsikak Udoh.
They were alleged to have connived with the school teacher to perpetrate the fraud.
ICPC, in a series of investigation, found that the school teacher had N539.5 million in her Guaranty Trust Bank account alleged to have been proceeds of money laundering from Malaysia.
She had told investigators during interrogation that the money found in her account belonged to her 24-year-old son, Chidozie Fabian Ejeaka, whose whereabouts could not be established.
A Post No Debit (PND) was placed on the account to allow the Commission to carry out further investigation, while a case of forfeiture of the suspected proceeds of crime was instituted against her in a court of law.
However, Mrs. Egbuha approached another court to challenge the restriction placed on her account by ICPC, as well as ask for the enforcement of her fundamental human right.
Her fresh arrest with the staff of GTB and the lawyer was due to their alleged connivance in lifting the restriction placed on her account and the subsequent transfer of N550 million (principal sum and interest) into the GTB account of FBI Legal, a company owned by Mrs. Egbuha’s lawyer, Ferdinand Isa.
The Commission found out that the money was transferred on 4th June, 2020, the same day a court order was said to have been obtained.
The lawyer claimed that the order vacating the restriction on the account was based on an out-of-court settlement with GTB which empowered his client to access her money.
The Commission also found out that the N550 million was promptly split and moved into multiple bank accounts owned by Bureau de Change operators and private individuals.
N340 million, in two instalments of N200 million and N140 million respectively, was allegedly moved into the Polaris bank account of a Bureau de Change operator.
N100 million was transferred into the GTB account of Edokaf Multi-global, while N18 million was transferred to the private account of the lawyer, Isa. The balance of the money was moved into other accounts.
Investigation is still ongoing and appropriate actions will be taken upon conclusion.
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